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Filmmaker Josh Fox Speaks At SUNY New Paltz

WAMC/Allison Dunne

Anti-fracking activist and filmmaker Josh Fox spoke to an audience at SUNY New Paltz last night, urging New York Governor Andrew Cuomo to ban fracking.

Gasland and Gasland 2 filmmaker Josh Fox, banjo in hand, spoke to a filled lecture hall at the State University of New York at New Paltz. His presentation came on the one-year anniversary of Hurricane Sandy. Fox took the opportunity of the anniversary to tweet a photo of the New Paltz audience at Cuomo and President Obama, typing, “we're from New Paltz, #notfromgasland. #endclimatesilence.

Fox referenced Sandy in connection with climate change, commending Governor Cuomo for saying post-storm that climate change is real.

Fox says leadership in government is missing.

He says Cuomo has an enormous political opportunity.

Karen Moreau would like to see the opposite. She is executive director of the New York State Petroleum Council.

New York has a moratorium on fracking, or hydraulic fracturing, and is awaiting Cuomo’s decision on whether to ban the method of extracting natural gas from shale formations. A spokesman for the governor would say only that the matter is under review by the state Department of Environmental Conservation and state Department of Health, with no set timeline for a decision. Moreau says residents in New York’s Southern Tier are hurting economically.

Again, here’s Fox, whose films explore the negative impacts of fracking.

Fox also talked about a new project getting under way.

Here’s New Paltz Town Supervisor Susan Zimet.

Zimet, who has been working with Fox and other environmental activists, notes that her town has a fracking ban.

Fox’s presentation was sponsored by the SUNY New Paltz Environmental Task Force, yet organized by a newly-formed grassroots group. He was the first in what group members hope will become a series of speaker presentations on health and the environment.

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